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  • Writer's pictureJordan Drayer

Discipline of Love

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Gevurah of Chesed

Hi everyone, Jordan again, savvy millennial voice actress. Today is the second day of the Omer. Today's focus is Gevurah of Chesed, meaning the strength and also the boundaries of loving-kindness.

On the sefirot tree, these two are opposites: we as humans need kindness and love and benevolence, but there needs to be a limit to it as well. We can't go around just saying "oh, you'll do better next time. You didn't mean to drive drunk and hit that person. You didn't mean to rape that girl." No, we need consequences. Gevurah is like justice, the might of God, and thus boundaries.

I'm not one, but I know for parents, you want your kids to have a good life, want to do everything for them if they're having a hard time. But no, as part of human growth, we need to learn to do things on our own. So no matter how much you want to fix the problem out of love, you might have to restrain yourself so that the kid, though they may struggle, will figure it out on their own.

It could also be a friend or spouse relationship. I know in high school, I was the toxic friend that couldn't let my friends do stuff without me and wanted them all to myself. I didn't have many friends, so the few I had, I held onto tightly. I thought this loyalty was a good thing. But no, I didn't let them live their own lives. I saw them as an extension of me, and that was a hard lesson to learn. We need to discipline ourselves in love, give others space, and respond to their needs.

Of course, you must also speak up and tell them your needs. If a person simply can't fulfill your need for love, maybe they aren't the friend or spouse for you. Today, if I give a person multiple chances to be available to get together over several weeks, and they're always busy, I decide, "they're too busy to be friends with me." Maybe they really don't like me and are ignoring me on purpose. but giving the benefit of the doubt is something I'm working on anyway from the Four Agreements book. And that allows us to see them in a light of love (remember our theme here) instead of a light of anger.

So how do we practice a discipline of love? I can do this by asking my roommates more if they're actually free and planning things with them, instead of assuming they'll be available to hang out. Maybe if you have kids, encourage them to solve problems on their own for at least 10 minutes before they can ask you for help. Again, small things, but being specific helps. See you tomorrow!

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